Stressing on the development and the promotion of renewable energy, the West Bengal Renewable Energy Development Agency (WBREDA) has undertaken a project to install solar water heater systems in as many as 89 buildings across the state.
The initiative was taken to generate an alternative resource of energy which could be utilised for heating water used in kitchens for various purposes. Initially, the solar water heater plants would be installed in all the government buildings. The state power department has given a huge thrust on the development of alternative source of energy in the state.
According to a senior official of the WBREDA, the solar water heating system would be installed at various hostels, schools, government buildings and even in destitute homes. The equipment would be installed in as many as 89 hostels under the state backward class development department and the social welfare department.
A senior official of the WBREDA said the solar water heater plants will have a capacity of 300 and 500 litre per day (LPD) respectively.
The capacity of the plants will mostly depend on the requirement of the building. If there are 125 people in a hostel, a solar plant of 300 LPD will be installed there. If there are 150-200 people in a government hostel or any other building, the capacity of the solar plants will be around 500 LPD. Two solar heating plants each with a capacity of 500 LPD will be set up in a building where there are around 1,000 inmates.
Ward water would be prepared by these plants which will be directly supplied to the kitchens of these buildings through a pipeline. The water can in turn be used for various purposes like cooking, washing and other household works by the inmates of the hostels. These solar heating plants will last for 12-15 years and contribute to the cost curtailment of the hostels.
The initiative will save the consumption of the LPG gas thereby cutting down the expenditure of the government buildings. According to an estimate, on an average, a hostel or any other government building can save Rs 8,250 at least when a building will use water heating plants instead of LPG.
It may be mentioned that WBREDA has already installed the solar water heating system at the Administrative Training Institute, Police Training College and Ichhapur Rifle Factory. An official said that last year a total of around 22,000 LPD of solar heating plants have been installed by the agency. The power department has already taken an elaborate scheme to install solar plants on roof tops of various schools, colleges and other government buildings under "Aloshree", Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's dream project.
However, the state power department has no plan to install the water heating plant at domestic households as of now. The decision may be taken later by the government, he added.